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Julius Caesar

by William Shakespeare

Act 2, Scene 4 Easiest-to-Read Edition

 

 

 

Julius Caesar Act 2, Scene 4



Another part of the same street before the house of Brutus

Enter PORTIA and LUCIUS

Enter PORTIA and LUCIUS

PORTIA

I prithee, boy, run to the senate house.

Stay not to answer me, but get thee gone.

Why dost thou stay?

 

PORTIA

I prithee, boy, run to the senate house.

Stay not to answer me, but get thee gone.

Why dost thou stay?

 

LUCIUS

To know my errand, madam.

 

LUCIUS

    To know my errand, madam.

 

PORTIA

I would have had thee there and here again

Ere I can tell thee what thou shouldst do there.

(to herself)

—O constancy, be strong upon my side,

constancy=determination

Set a huge mountain ’tween my heart and tongue!

I have a man’s mind but a woman’s might.

might=strength

How hard it is for women to keep counsel!

counsel=secrets

—Art thou here yet?

 

PORTIA

I would have had thee there and here again

Ere I can tell thee what thou shouldst do there.

—O constancy, be strong upon my side,

Set a huge mountain ’tween my heart and tongue!

I have a man’s mind but a woman’s might.

How hard it is for women to keep counsel!

—Art thou here yet?

 

LUCIUS

Madam, what should I do?

Run to the Capitol, and nothing else?

And so return to you, and nothing else?

 

LUCIUS

    Madam, what should I do?

Run to the Capitol, and nothing else?

And so return to you, and nothing else?

 

PORTIA

Yes, bring me word, boy, if thy lord look well,

For he went sickly forth. And take good note

What Caesar doth, what suitors press to (on) him.

Hark, boy! What noise is that?

 

PORTIA

Yes, bring me word, boy, if thy lord look well,

For he went sickly forth. And take good note

What Caesar doth, what suitors press to him.

Hark, boy! What noise is that?

 

LUCIUS

I hear none, madam.

 

LUCIUS

I hear none, madam.

 

PORTIA

Prithee, listen well.

I heard a bustling rumor like a fray,

fray=scuffle

And the wind brings it from the Capitol.

 

PORTIA

Prithee, listen well.

I heard a bustling rumor like a fray,

And the wind brings it from the Capitol.

 

LUCIUS

Sooth, madam, I hear nothing.

 

LUCIUS

Sooth, madam, I hear nothing.

 

Enter the SOOTHSAYER

Enter the SOOTHSAYER

PORTIA

Come hither, fellow. Which way hast thou been?

 

PORTIA

Come hither, fellow. Which way hast thou been?

 

SOOTHSAYER

At mine own house, good lady.

 

SOOTHSAYER

At mine own house, good lady.

 

PORTIA

What is ’t o'clock?

 

PORTIA

What is ’t o'clock?

 

SOOTHSAYER

About the ninth hour, lady.

 

SOOTHSAYER

About the ninth hour, lady.

 

PORTIA

Is Caesar yet gone to the Capitol?

 

PORTIA

Is Caesar yet gone to the Capitol?

 

SOOTHSAYER

Madam, not yet. I go to take my stand

To see him pass on to the Capitol.

 

SOOTHSAYER

Madam, not yet. I go to take my stand

To see him pass on to the Capitol.

 

PORTIA

Thou hast some suit to Caesar, hast thou not?

suit=request

 

PORTIA

Thou hast some suit to Caesar, hast thou not?

 

SOOTHSAYER

That I have, lady. If it will please Caesar

To be so good to Caesar as to hear me,

I shall beseech him to befriend himself.

 

SOOTHSAYER

That I have, lady. If it will please Caesar

To be so good to Caesar as to hear me,

I shall beseech him to befriend himself.

 

PORTIA

Why, know’st thou any harm’s intended towards him?

 

PORTIA

Why, know’st thou any harm’s intended towards him?

 

SOOTHSAYER

None that I know will be, much that I fear may chance.

Good morrow to you. Here the street is narrow.

The throng that follows Caesar at the heels

Of senators, of praetors, common suitors

praetors=judges

Will crowd a feeble man almost to death.

I’ll get me to a place more void and there

Speak to great Caesar as he comes along.

 

SOOTHSAYER

None that I know will be; much that I fear may chance.

Good morrow to you. Here the street is narrow.

The throng that follows Caesar at the heels,

Of senators, of praetors, common suitors,

Will crowd a feeble man almost to death.

I’ll get me to a place more void, and there

Speak to great Caesar as he comes along.

 

Exit SOOTHSAYER

Exit SOOTHSAYER

PORTIA

I must go in. (aside) Ay me, how weak a thing

The heart of woman is! O Brutus,

The heavens speed thee in thine enterprise!

Sure, the boy heard me. (to LUCIUS) Brutus hath a suit

That Caesar will not grant.—Oh, I grow faint.—

Run, Lucius, and commend me to my lord.

Say I am merry. Come to me again,

And bring me word what he doth say to thee.

 

PORTIA

I must go in. (aside) Ay me, how weak a thing

The heart of woman is! O Brutus,

The heavens speed thee in thine enterprise!

Sure, the boy heard me. (to LUCIUS) Brutus hath a suit

That Caesar will not grant.—Oh, I grow faint.—

Run, Lucius, and commend me to my lord.

Say I am merry. Come to me again,

And bring me word what he doth say to thee.

 

Exeunt severally

Exeunt severally

 

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